Pros and Cons of “For Sale By Owner” Homes

As a homebuyer, you may have weighed your options on buying a home, but have you considered a home that is “For Sale By Owner”? If not, take some time to get to know the pros and cons of this type of home buying and see if it may be an option for your home buying needs.



One of the biggest advantages that you will find with this type of home buying is that you are speaking directly to the owner, not a real estate agent. Because of this, you can gather as much information as you need and get that information directly from the source. This way, there is not miscommunication or confusion over the details of the home or the buying process.
A nice tip to remember is that, if you choose this type of home buying, take a little time to come up with numerous questions. Remember that this is the seller you are talking to, not the real estate agent. Think of any question possible, no matter if you think it is silly to ask such details or not. Getting as much information as you possibly can will leave you feeling more content with your decision on whether or not to buy the home.

Lower Prices

When a seller chooses to hire a real estate agent, a good portion of their money will go towards paying that real estate agent. However, when no real estate agent is used in selling their home, many sellers may be more willing to go down on the overall price. As a result, your monthly payments can be lower.

Constant Involvement

Your involvement in the overall process will increase with no real estate agent present for the seller or you. This means that you will constantly be involved in not just communicating with the seller, but also with title companies and even inspectors. Every aspect of the home buying process will use your involvement, which ultimately means that you will have better control over things such as timeframes.

Issues Easily Solved

Creativity comes into play when you are dealing with the seller directly. If there is something in the contract that does not work for you or for the seller, then you can sit down and talk through it to find a solution that makes both parties content.


Agent Fees

Even though the seller has chosen to sell the home on their own and not use a real estate agent, it does not mean that you cannot use one. With using your own real estate agent, be prepared to pay any and all fees associated with that real estate agent. With “For Sale By Owner” homes, most sellers will request this of the buyer from the very start because selling their home in this manner is often a way that they seller uses to cut costs in the first place.

Depending on the type of housing and agreements made, this fee could be something that you will have to pay at the closing on a home. In some case, this fee cannot even be placed into the financing on your mortgage, so be prepared ahead of time.


When it comes to buying a home, there are a lot of documents that you will have to not only read, but understand. Many of these documents may contain words or statements that can be hard to understand on your own. It may be difficult to find time to read through everything and research the meaning as well. You can hire a real estate agent if you feel this is going to be an overwhelming part of the process, but this goes back to agent fees and how you can expect to pay all of them.

Constant Involvement

While this was listed as a pro earlier, it could be a definite con for anyone who leads a busy lifestyle. When you are involved with all aspects of the home buying process, without the help of a real estate agent, you will have to take time out of your busy schedule to have meetings, discuss information about the home, viewing the home on several occasions, reading over the necessary documents for buying the home and documents at closing, and even be present for routine tasks such as inspections.
Weigh the pros and cons to see if one will outweigh the other when it comes to choosing a “For Sale By Owner” home. If you see more positives, do not be afraid to take your time and do the research that is necessary to start this process yourself or hire a real estate agent if you feel you need one to help you through the entire home buying process.

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